Welcome to the 2012 DC Fantasy Forum Offseason!
This goes far beyond your typical forum mock draft. We will be including free agency, trading, franchise tags, salary cap management and so much more this time around.
One important thing to note is this email address: email@example.com
That is where you will send all official transactions and offers.
I’ve set this up because we have a limit of 100 PMs and I will almost certainly hit that max once we get rolling. So send any cuts, restructures, trades, free agent offers, franchise tag designations, etc. there please.
Please always include these things in the subject line for ease of reference:
TEAM NAME - DC USERNAME - DETAILS OF THE EMAIL
(For “details,” it should be one of these things: Cuts, Trade, Franchise/RFA, Free Agent List, etc.)
And always include these things in the body as well:
(Redundancy is a good thing here.)
I will not send you spam or anything like that, so don’t worry about sending from your personal email. I just need you to include your username and your team because I may not be able to tell who you are otherwise.
So here are the steps we will be going through and the basic procedures for each.
0.) Signing Up
To sign up, simply send an email to me at firstname.lastname@example.org with the following information:
2.) Cell Phone #: (I will ONLY use this if it's ok with you. I'll only use it let you know when you're up to select in the draft. If you're not able to make the pick yourself, you can text it to me.)
3.) 5 teams you would most like to GM.
Please also include if you would be willing to work with a Co-GM and who that is (if you have one in mind.) Co-GMs are expected to work together and to keep eachother apprised of possible moves or deals. Both will have the power to make trades or selections.
Since I'm familiar with most of the posters, I'm not going to ask for more than that. I know you and have likely participated with you in the past.
1.) Salary Cap Management
(I had originally planned to go more in depth with this, but because the real life teams keep making cuts and restructures, it’s too much of a pain to keep up with, so I have modified my original plans.)
Now, I’m lousy with math and believe me, you do not want me going anywhere near exact numbers and bonuses and cap penalties and all of that if you value your (and my) sanity. So, rather than deal with every single penny of dealing with player transactions, I’ll be using ball park estimates.
This page lists the teams relatively current salary situations: Salary Cap Projections.
Additionally, teams are allowed to carry over their remaining 2011 cap space. I will combine these with the totals listed in the link above:
For the sake of this forum offseason, I will set it so that all teams will be below the salary cap.
Teams currently over the cap (those listed in the 3rd section of the first article) will be placed JUST UNDER
the cap (since they’ll have to be there eventually anyway.) Any real life cuts that those teams make prior to us beginning will be added to the free agent list here.
Once we’ve started, the team is yours and real life transactions will no longer automatically occur here.
You can further improve your team’s salary cap situation by cutting players.
This will be the first thing we do. To cut a player, you will simply send an email to the address listed above with the player’s name and a link to a reliable source (read: NOT a forum post) that says what his 2012 cap hit would have been.
If you are unable to find such a source, use Rotoworld. (Find the player and click on “view contract details.) We will just use his 2012 salary for our purposes here.
I reserve the right to reject an unrealistic cut. Once a player has been cut, he will be added to the free agent list and assigned a ranking there.
I will keep track of each move a team makes and how it affects their salary cap situation.
As I said before, our starting point will be the salary cap situations in the link above. I will not be keeping track of every single dollar spent or saved, it will be more like just using rough figures.
The further under the cap you go, the better your chances become of landing higher quality and/or a larger quantity of available free agents.
This process will be explained later.
2.) Franchise Tags and Restricted Free Agents
While cuts are going on, teams may also designate franchise players and set tenders on RFAs.
You will simply submit these to me via the email address above. The basic real life rules of both of these processes apply.
Since applying the franchise tag to a player means you will be making him a top 5 paid player at his position, this will count against your salary cap situation and hinder your ability to go after higher level free agents.
Once franchised, you will be given the option to match any offers made to your franchise player. If you choose not to match, the signing team will owe you two first round picks.
For RFAs, it will be assumed that all of them are already tendered at the lowest level possible
(the right to match offers only, no compensation.) If you wish to apply a higher tender (1st round, 2nd round, or round the player was drafted in,) you will simply submit this in an email to me
. If another team makes an offer to the player, you will have the ability to match it. If you choose not to, that team will owe you whatever the compensation was set at. (There are some teams with “exclusive rights” free agents who I didn’t include in the list because, for all intents and purposes, they are not free agents. You will automatically just keep them all.)
Please note, that like franchising a player, setting a higher RFA level may hinder your ability to sign free agents.
So apply tenders carefully.
3.) Free Agent Signing Period
Once teams have been given every opportunity to cut players as well as franchise or tender them, we will begin the free agent signing period
You may notice on the free agent list that each player has been put in a tier. A breakdown of these tiers follows:
- The top tier. The very best free agents who will require a massive salary and will instantly, drastically improve the team they go to. (Examples: Mario Williams, Carl Nicks, Vincent Jackson, etc.)
- Guys who are very good but aren’t quite elite, or, in some cases, elite players that won’t command a giant salary due to age or other concerns like a recent injury. (Examples of the former: Mario Manningham, Tracy Porter, Curtis Lofton....Examples of the latter: London Fletcher, Jeff Saturday, John Abraham.)
C.) Mid Level
- Guys who could be serviceable starters, good role players, good rotational players, great backups, are really old but still pretty good players, or were once good players but suffered a serious injury.. (Examples: Deion Branch, Jeff Backus, John Carlson, etc.)
D.) Low Level
- Everyone else. Nobodies, has beens, never weres, fullbacks, punters, and kickers etc.
(These are essentially set, so don't bother complaining. They've been run past several sets of trusted eyes to end up where they are. Unless you spot a grievous error, I'm not changing them.)
Basically, when you submit your offers, instead of an actual dollar figure, you will simply write the tier level you would be willing to pay that free agent.
Now, just because a player is in a certain tier, it doesn’t mean you can’t make them a better or worse offer.
For example, if there is a Quality player you really want, offer him an Elite level contract. If you are the only team to do so, he will almost certainly sign with you. Additionally, if a Elite level player doesn’t get an Elite level offer during the first round of signings, he may be willing to accept a Quality level offer the 2nd time through.
So feel free to offer a guy less than his level if he’s not getting much interest elsewhere.
I will consider your cap situation (in additional to any other factors I can think of or that you present as arguments in your list) as to who signs where.
If you’re a team way under the cap, money isn’t likely to be a factor in your initial signings. If, after the first round of free agency, you signed several Elite or Quality players, it will become more difficult for you to sign additional high level free agents. Teams who don’t have much cap space and are attempting to sign high level free agents will also struggle. This is how your cap situation will come into play.
Additionally, you may sign an unlimited number of “veteran minimum” deals that I will not count against your cap situation. You must say in your offer that is is for the veteran minimum.
If a player has any better offers, he will take those over yours. However, there may be a few situations where a player would take the veteran minimum offer of a better team over a better offer from a lesser team. (For example, a veteran nearing the end of his career may take a veteran minimum offer from a Superbowl contender to try and win a ring over a Low level offer from a lesser team.)
Speaking of “rounds,” we will do THREE rounds of free agency.
The first will thin out the ranks a bit and a lot of the big names will probably sign. Players will not accept offers from below the tier they are listed at during this period.
Then, you will get a little time to regroup for a 2nd round to clean up a bit. Most players will simply take the best offer available during this period. Once the cleanup 2nd round is finished, we will do the draft. Following the draft, all remaining free agents (as well as undrafted free agents) will be available to be signed for any offer. If there are a lot of free agents still available after the 2nd round, I may consider adding a 3rd pre-draft signing period...we’ll see how it goes.
Now, how exactly will the signing of free agents work? Well, the better your cap situation, the more high tier offers you’ll be able to make.
Teams way under the cap can basically make offers to anyone while teams with less cap space will not. If you used your franchise tag or made high level RFA tenders, it will be harder for your to sign Elite or Quality level free agents. Additionally, if you sign a high level free agent and/or several lower level ones in the first round of free agency, it will be harder for you to get high level players in the 2nd round of free agency.
Like I’ve said, I will be keeping track of your teams salary situation using the numbers in the articles above as a starting point (and adjusting them for cuts, franchise tags, RFA tenders, etc.) Once you’ve submitted your offers, I will look through them all and determine who the free agent will sign with based on your offer, your salary cap situation and whatever arguments you make for why that player would want to sign with your team in the email.
Now, I mentioned arguments. When you submit your offers via email, I highly encourage you to include arguments in addition to simply what level offer you want to make the player.
I don’t want you to write a book for each one, because I probably won’t read it all, so please just make a few bullet points.
Use common sense but also, be creative
. Here are some sample arguments you could make:
- He’ll be a starter on my team
- He will get to play with/next to Player X who is a Pro Bowler
- He’ll fit our system really well (add some details about how he’ll fit)
- Our head coach is his former coordinator who he liked
- A link to an article saying that the player would like to play there
- ETC. (use your imagination, creativity wins bonus points with me.)
Also, when submitting offers, be as specific as possible.
I will reply asking you to clarify if I cannot understand it. If you do not respond to clarify, I will just go by what I assume you meant. All signings are final. Ways to be specific and avoid confusion include:
- I would like one of these DEs (list them, ranked 1-X)
- I would like one of these Elite players and one of these Quality players, but not at the same position (list them ranked in the order you want them)
- I want as many of these players as I can get (list them in a general order of preference)
And feel free to include as many players on your list as you want.
Have backup plans for your contingency plan’s backup plans. Just make sure you’re specific in how you list them and how you word everything. Like I said, I’ll try to get clarification from you if I have a question, but I’ll go by whatever I think you meant if I don’t hear back from you.
Additionally, if you want to submit an updated list after each round of free agency, feel free to do so. Just put “UPDATED!” at the end of the subject line so I know to use the new one.
(Otherwise, I’ll just continue to reference the most recent one I’ve received from you.)
And remember to include signings that aren’t big. For example, if you only have one QB under contract, you will need a backup at some point. Remember to include even minor signings like that.
I will announce the time by which all offers must be submitted for each round of free agency.
I will then take some time to go through all of the offers and determine who signs where.
I will not allow inactive teams to simply languish.
Since that could severely throw off realism and make it less fun for everyone else, I will make some offers on their behalf. (For example, if the Saints GM were to be inactive, I will franchise tag Drew Brees and include them when considering offers for their free agents.) However, active teams will always have the advantage when it comes to signing players. SO BE ACTIVE.
You will be free to make trades. You can swap players, include picks, include future picks...whatever. However, do note, that any trades you make will be taken into consideration when it comes to your ability to signing free agents.
Typically, when players are traded, they sign new contracts with their new teams. Additionally, any bonus money they were owed becomes immediately due. So trade wisely.
To submit a trade, both parties must simply email me the details of the trade.
I will then approve or reject it. If rejected, I will reply to let you know my reasoning.
Please note: there will be no sign-and-trades allowed.
You may trade franchise players or tendered RFAs, but if you sign a free agent, he is yours.
5.) The Draft
It will work just like a regular forum mock. Free agent signing will be suspended from the end of the 2nd (or 3rd if another is added) signing period until after the draft. Specific draft rules will be posted at draft time. (General forum mock rules apply. Two hour time limit for first round picks, one hour for all other rounds. Etc etc etc.)
6.) Templates of what to include in the emails
Here is a template for what to send me if you wish to cut a player:
Cut: WR Bill Smith
2012 Salary: $5 Million
(Insert justification here if it is a questionable cut)
(Insert link to a page including the player’s 2012 salary or cap hit)
Template to use a Franchise Tag or set an RFA tender:
Franchise Tag: WR Bob Smith
(Justification if it’s a questionable move)
Set RFA Tender: 1st round on DE John Smith
(Justification if it’s a questionable move)
Here is a template for what to submit when signing a free agent:
I would like to sign ONE of these defensive ends:
1.) DE Mario Williams (Elite)
- Offer: Elite Level
Reasons why he would want to come to my team:
- Play next to Pro Bowler X on the D line
- Fits our system well
- Our defensive coordinator is his former d-line coach
- No one on our team currently has his number.
- Here’s an article saying that he likes BBQ ribs and we have really good BBQ rib places (link)
2.) DE Calais Campbell (Elite)
- Offer: Elite Level
Reasons why he would want to come to my team:
- blah blah blah
3.) DE Robert Mathis (Elite)
- Offer: Elite Level
- blah blah blah
4.) DE Israel Idonije (Quality)
- Offer: Quality Level
5.) DE Adam Carriker (Mid)
- Offer: Mid Level
I would like to sign ONE of these wide receivers:
1.) blah blah
2.) blah blah
3.) blah blah
I would like to sign as many of these players as a I can, but NOT more than one of each position:
(In order of overall preference)
1.) RB X - Blah
2.) TE Z - Blah
3.) RB Y - Blah
4.) DT W - Blah
5.) OG Q - Blah